Thursday, June 09, 2011

Scott Adams - internet debates

Adams also offers these helpful internet debate tactics (see also his Reading Comprehension Test to show that someone is stupid:

Results Of Why I'm Stupid

If you are new to the Internet, allow me to explain how to
debate in this medium. When one person makes any kind of
statement, all you need to do is apply one of these methods to
make it sound stupid. Then go on the offensive.

1. Turn someone's generality into an absolute. For example, if
someone makes a general statement that Americans celebrate
Christmas, point out that some people are Jewish and so anyone
who thinks that ALL Americans celebrate Christmas is stupid.
(Bonus points for accusing the person of being anti-Semitic.)

2. Turn someone's factual statements into implied preferences.
For example, if someone mentions that not all Catholic priests
are pedophiles, accuse the person who said it of siding with

3. Turn factual statements into implied equivalents. For
example, if someone says that Ghandi didn't eat cows, accuse the
person of stupidly implying that cows deserve equal billing with

4. Omit key words. For example, if someone says that people
can't eat rocks, accuse the person of being stupid for
suggesting that people can't eat. Bonus points for arguing that
some people CAN eat pebbles if they try hard enough.

5. Assume the dumbest interpretation. For example, if someone
says that he can run a mile in 12 minutes, assume he means it
happens underwater and argue that no one can hold his breath
that long.

6. Hallucinate entirely different points. For example, if
someone says apples grow on trees, accuse him of saying snakes
have arms and then point out how stupid that is.

7. Use the intellectual laziness card. For example, if someone
says that ice is cold, recommend that he take graduate courses
in chemistry and meteorology before jumping to stupid
conclusions that display a complete ignorance of the complexity
of ice.

1 comment:

hidispenser said...

Funny and quite true. As for #1, that's why I like to qualify statements with words like many, most, some, etc., just so I don't have to waste time on the inevitable challenge that I meant "all" if I failed to use a qualifier.